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   The December 2001 Pneuma Informer

The December 2001 Pneuma Informer

In this issue:

What's New at www.PneumaFoundation.org

  • On-line article from the Pneuma Review: "Mayim Chayim: The Living Waters" by Kevin Williams - added November 9, 2001. mayim_chayim.jsp
  • On-line only article by Kevin Williams "Unify the Name" on the ancient Hebrew understanding of the tri-unity of God. - added November 16, 2001.intro_unify_the_name.jsp

Also, be sure to check out the "What's New" section on the Pneuma Foundation homepage. New articles and other features are being added almost weekly.

Have a website you would like linked to the Pneuma Foundation? Write Webmaster Dave Driggs with your suggestion. Or use the on-line form to submit your suggestion: /links.jsp#link.

Reports from Around the World

Ministry Experiences 'Pentecost-type' Results
Officials of a Chicago-based ministry that provides God's Word and discipleship worldwide have seen "Pentecost-type" results this year. Bible League staff in 46 countries counted 219,074 converts discipled and baptized in 2001—a 21 percent increase over 2000.

"To put these results in perspective, each week our worldwide partners are reporting another Pentecost event, with more than 4,200 converts being discipled, baptized and received into church membership each week of the year," said David Stravers, Bible League's executive vice president of ministry. "Usually, when we think of the Acts 2 story of 3,000 people responding to Peter's Pentecost sermon, we think this is the epitome of evangelistic effectiveness. But actually this degree of Spirit-led impact has become the normal situation for [our] ministries around the world."

Besides a record number of converts in 2001, the ministry reported last week that nearly 1.9 million people completed Bible studies to earn their own New Testament or complete Scriptures—a 12 percent increase over the previous year. Also, 3,075 new churches—13 percent more than 2000—were established in areas where no church had existed. Although encouraged by the results, Bible League officials estimate that they have to turn down two out of three requests for Bibles because of lack of funds.
Source: Charisma News Service, Dec 13, 2001 Vol. 3 No. 184. Used with permission.

India: "Sorry, we've just run over your god"
A group of Christian researchers traveled to a village in Northern India to study the local religious convictions and practices. Just before arriving at the village, they felt a bump, as though they had run over something. When they looked to see what it was, they discovered a 2-meter-long Cobra. When they entered the village, they asked the people what they believed and worshipped, and were told "Each morning, a large Cobra comes to the village. We feed it and worship it." They told the people "Well, that means we probably accidentally ran over your god this morning. Let us tell you something about the creator of the snake -- and of us all." At the end of the day, the villagers decided to become Christians, so a new church started the very same day.
Source: Friday Fax 2001 Issue 48

Evangelical Christianity's rapidly increasing growth rate
In his upcoming book The New Christianity, American church growth researcher and author Jim Rutz describes the astonishing increase in the growth rate of evangelical Christianity. "In the mid-80's, evangelical Christianity experienced a strong upward turn. Prior to 1985, the growth rate was 2% per year, slightly higher than the growth of the world population; today it is around 7.5% per year. If the current growth continues, the entire world would be followers of Jesus Christ in 2041..." he says.

'''Year''' Christians (millions) Growth rate in percent
1970 272 '
1985 366 2% (1970-85)
1990 445 4(1985-90)
1995 596 6(1990-95)
2000 836 7(1995-2000)
2001 899 7.5(2000+)

In comparison, the growth rates of the most important religious groups:

Growth rate in percent
Catholics 1.2 %
World population 1.3
Buddhists 1.7
Hindus 2.3
All "Christians" 2.6
Moslems 2.7
All Protestants 2.9
Evangelicals 7.5

Evangelical Christians include Pentecostal/charismatic Christians, as well as a growing number of Christians outside traditional churches. The figures are Jim Rutz' extrapolations of statistical material from the "Global Evangelization Movement" (David Barrett) and Dawn Ministries, and an 'intelligent estimate' of 130 million evangelical Christians in China today.
Source: Jim Rutz [jamesrutz [at] cs.com], The New Christianity, as appearing in Friday Fax 2001 Issue 47.

Sponsor A Christian Leader
There are a number of ministries worldwide that have said they would be benefited by receiving the Pneuma Review but cannot afford the subscription costs. Are you interested in building the body of Christ by helping equip others with biblically sound teaching from a Pentecostal/charismatic perspective? One small way you get become involved in that great task is by sponsoring a ministry or leader to receive the Pneuma Review on a quarterly basis.

Please consider sponsoring one of the ministries listed on the "Sponsors Needed" page (/seek_sponsor.jsp). A Pneuma Foundation member services representative would be happy to discuss any questions you have about this program.
Help equip others with the Word of God, sponsor a ministry or missionary today.

Thought to Ponder

We cannot grasp the true meaning of the divine holiness by thinking of someone or something very pure and then raising the concept to the highest degree we are capable of. God's holiness is not simply the best we know infinitely bettered. We know nothing like the divine holiness. It stands apart, unique, unapproachable, incomprehensible and unattainable. The natural man is blind to it. He may fear God's power and admire His wisdom, but His holiness he cannot even imagine.

— A. W. Tozer

Excerpts from the Winter 2002 (Vol 5, No 1) issue of the Pneuma Review

The Pneuma Review is a quarterly printed journal of ministry resources and theology for Pentecostal and charismatic ministries and leaders.

Complete Article:
"Pentecostalism and Ecumenism: Past, Present, and Future" Part 5 of 5, By Amos Yong

V. Pentecostalism and Ecumenism: Future Prospects and Tasks

The full series has now been reprinted online at the new PneumaReview.com website.

From the Worship Leader series: "Compliments: Stumbling Blocks or Treasures of the Heart?" by Rick Kamrath

Reprinted on the new PneumaReview.com website.

Prayer Requests:
  • Christian leaders in Argentina are asking believers worldwide to pray for their nation. Please pray for the escalating situation as people are rioting and looting in a rage against their government's perceived lack of action about the country's economic crisis.
  • A friend of the ministry, Pastor Daniel of the Philippines, has asked us to pray with him for effectiveness in ministry as he shows the love of Jesus to the millions of street children in Manila. The needs are so great, but God is greater.
  • Dave Johnson, missionary to the Philippines and writer for the Pneuma Review, has asked for prayer as he researches the beliefs and religious practices of the Waray people in an attempt to develop better teaching in order to bring them to Jesus Christ. Dave and his wife Debbie have asked specifically for prayer for: God's special protection because much of the research involves asking questions that in way or another deal with the demoni, God's guidance and protection on all their journeys, that the people will answer the questions honestly, that a spiritual breakthrough will take place, and that God will give them wisdom to use the knowledge they obtain to evangelize and disciple the Waray-Waray people more effectively.
  • A friend of the Pneuma Foundation has asked us to pray for her father: "Please pray for my father, Bill who has pancreatic cancer. He has only been given a few months to live. Please pray that the Lord will heal my father so that he may live a long and glorious life."
  • An evangelist in Pakistan has asked the Pneuma Foundation to pray with him for the Lord's provision for ministry efforts in his country. Please pray for financial provision, open doors, and open hearts to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. If you would like to learn more about this ministry or how you might help, please contact Member Services, for more information.

Praise Reports:
  • Praise the Lord for the positive impact Christians were able to have during the conversion rally of low-caste Hindu Dalits to Buddhism in Delhi, India on November 4. There was a concerted effort made to prevent a Christian influence on the ceremony, with police and regional leaders attempting to prevent any conversions to Christianity. Though it was obvious to some observers that conversions from Hinduism to Buddhism were apathetically permitted, the aggression against Christianity was quite apparent. Through it all, Christians were able to display the love of Christ and show solidarity with those Dalits (the "untouchables") seeking relief from the oppressive caste system. May the Lord use these seeds to bring a great harvest in the future.
  • Praise God that although many ministries have seen giving slack off since the attack on America on Sept. 11, the faithful support of Pneuma Foundation members and friends has continued with little change. Thanks to all contributors for making this ministry continue to grow. Although the Pneuma Foundation does not make appeals for financial assistance, our continued support demonstrates the faithfulness of God and His people.

Please send us your prayer requests and praise reports. We have a great God who always meets our needs.

If you would like more information about how you may help in meeting these needs, please E-mail Member Services.